SBD/Closing Bell

ESPN's Rob Parker Catching Heat For Comments On Robert Griffin III

ESPN’s Rob Parker is getting heat for some comments he made today in reference to Redskins QB Robert Griffin III. Parker was on the net’s “First Take” this morning when the topic of Griffin not wanting to be defined by his race was brought up. Parker said, “This throws up a red flag when I keep hearing … a black guy kind of distancing himself away from black people.” Parker then asked, “Is he a brother or is he a cornball brother?” He explained that Griffin is “black” but he is “not really down with the cause, he’s not one of us. He’s kind of black but he’s not the guy you really want to hang out with.”

ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith said he does not “judge someone’s blackness” based on whether he wears braids in his hair or the race of his fiancée, which was discussed earlier in the segment. ESPN’s Cari Champion said to Parker, “You can’t take a bit of his comments here and there and put them all together and assert he is distancing himself from being African-American” (“First Take,” ESPN2, 12/13).

KCSP-AM's Robert Ford wrote on his Twitter feed, "Stuff like Rob Parker's take on RGIII really irritate me. The idea that someone has to prove his/her blackness is absurd and myopic." MSNBC's Jamil Smith: "The notion that anyone can serve as an arbiter of someone's blackness really needs to go away." CBS Sports' Bruce Feldman tweeted, "Whoa. Maybe we should go back to Tebow stuff again."
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